Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Best Chocolate Chip Cookies I've Ever Had

These are the babies I talked about here.

3 1/3 C all purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
16 Tbsp (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 1/4 C packed light brown sugar
1/2 C granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
1 Tbsp vanilla
1 12 oz bag semisweet chocolate chips

1.  Adjust the oven racks to the upper and lower middle positions and heat the oven to 325.  Whisk the flour, baking soda, and salt together in a large bowl and set aside.

2.  Beat the butter and sugars in a large bowl using an electric mixer on medium speed until combined, 1 to 2 minutes.  Beat in the eggs, egg yolks, and vanilla until combined, about 30 seconds, scraping down the bowl and beaters as needed.

3.  Reduce the mixer speed to low and slowly mix in the flour mixture until combined, about 30 seconds.  Mix in the chocolate chips until incorporated.

4.  Working with 1/4 C of dough at a time, roll the dough into balls and lay on 2 parchment - lined baking sheets, spaced about 2 1/2 inches apart.  bake until the edges are golden but the centers are still soft and puffy, 17-20 minute, rotating and switching the baking sheets halfway through baking.

5.  Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets for 10 minutes, then serve warm or transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely.

My notes:  I didn't use a 1/4 C measuring cup for the dough, nor did I roll them in balls.  I just used two big spoons and plopped them down.  Have 3-4 baking sheets to make these - otherwise you're oven is on forever as you wait for the the cookies to cool, etc.  Don't try to bake these on a rough day.  The kids will need you at the same time the cookies need to be rotated. 

Banana Bread

This recipe was given to me by my old roommate Lori.  It is Trav's favorite - in fact he likes it so much he asks me to buy a bunch of bananas and then leaves 2 every week so I'll make a loaf. 

I've written it out according to the way I bake it.

Mix the following ingredients in a medium sized bowl:
1 C all purpose flour
1/2 C whole wheat flour
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 heaping tsp cinnamon

Mix the following ingredients in a small bowl:
1 egg (I usually use 1 rounded Tbsp of applesauce so it's friendly for my son with egg allergies)
2* bananas, mashed
1/4 C oil
3/4 C sugar

Fold the wet into the dry and mix well. 
Pour into a greased loaf pan.
Using a heavy hand, sprinkle the top with cinnamon sugar.

Bake in a preheated 350 oven for 50-55 mins, or until a tester comes out clean.

*I have used 1 banana before (used some applesauce for more moisture) and 3 bananas before.  We prefer it with 2 since 3 makes it a bit too banana-y for us.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

good recipes I've tried recently

basil cream sauce:  it calls for light cream but, having no cream in the house, I used plain yogurt.  I also didn't really use the measurements, I just dumped and seasoned as I saw best.  the parmesean cheese and basil really flavored the sauce - it was very yummy - and I stirred it into a pasta dish with mixed veggies and meat.

sweet and savory slow cooker pulled pork:  I halved this recipe, used dr. pepper instead of root beer (it was all we had in the house) and eye-balled the measurements.  and it came out great!  sooooo yummy!

black bean rice burgers:  a friend shared this recipe with me for my meatless fridays.  I added a little cumin and red pepper for extra kick, but they were otherwise tasty.  they kinda fell apart a bit, but I think that's because my sour cream was soupy and my rice a little water-y.

All of these recipes I will be making again. 

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

grilled chicken breasts and cauliflower

This was the celebratory meal honoring the 2nd anniversary of Lydia's Baptism.  (yay!)

grilled chicken breasts
lettuce salad
broccoli and cauliflower, smothered in butter, wrapped in foil and cooked on the grill
smashed cauliflower and potatoes

smashed cauliflower and potatoes:
fresh cauliflower florets and quartered, peeled potatoes were boiled til tender.
I reserved some of the water for the nutrients (does that work?) and mashed them with that.
seasoned with salt, pepper, butter and a handful of shredded cheese.

I thought the smashed c & p were delicious, but I was the only one who had seconds (and thirds).

Saturday, June 5, 2010

lack of posting means 2 things

#1 - We've been eating old standards:  pot roast (a special treat in our house, thanks to a great sale), burgers, corn on the cob, etc.

#2 - We've been eating out:  birthday money and parents mean we've had pizza and Chinese food more than once lately.

Something else I thought I'd woefully confess:  Tonight I shamefully admit that for the first time in our marriage we are eating Kraft mac and cheese.  We are also eating frozen pizza (the first we've had in at least a year) and, for an appetizer, cheese filled pretzel bites.  Oh yeah, and we didn't even start heating things up until 8:30pm.  What bad parents.  I told Travis, "Our dinner tonight is everything that's wrong with America."